September 20, 2017

ROGER KIMBALL: WHY TRUMP’S UN SPEECH WAS A TRIUMPH.

Donald Trump on Tuesday confirmed yet again why he is the most robust president since Ronald Reagan. Following up on his brilliant speeches before a joint session of Congress in February, his speech about combating Islamic terrorism before Arab leaders in Saudi Arabia, and his splendid defense of Western civilizational values in Warsaw a few months ago, Trump addressed the United Nations and articulated for the 150 delegates at that ostentatiously corrupt institution the signal lesson of successful international relations: that freedom within nations, and comity among them, is best served not by the effacement or attenuation of national sovereignty but its frank and manly embrace. . . .

The United Nations has in recent decades become a poster child for bureaucratic despond: corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient. It has also evolved into a megaphone for anti-American, left-wing sentiment, often hiding behind utopian world-government rhetoric.

This development, Trump reminded his listeners, is a blunt betrayal of the noble aspirations that formed the United Nations in the aftermath of World War II. Trump quoted Harry Truman, who stressed that the success of the United Nations depended on the “independent strength of its members.” The United Nations was not created to subvert national sovereignty but to help guarantee it.

One of the most refreshing things about Trump’s address—it is characteristic of his speeches—was his frankness. At the U.N., this had a positive as well as a critical side. On the positive side, I found it a breath of fresh air to hear an American president celebrate the achievements of America.

Read the whole thing. The text of Trump’s speech is here.

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